Niagara Falls casinos are officially back – for the most part, at least.
Fallsview Casino and Casino Niagara reopened their doors in the Ontario tourist trap last month. But, both came with restrictions amid ever-changing health regulations due to the (still raging) COVID-19 pandemic.
For now, when it comes to Casino Niagara, gaming services will be accessible 24/7. But there will be some limitations on live table games between 12 pm – 4 am. Poker and blackjack are back on the table, however.
All this comes as a positive in the grand scheme of things.
Previously, Casino Niagara reduced its reopening hours to 10 am – 2 am with limited gaming equipment and tables.
Meanwhile, Fallsview has taken a different approach. They’ve offered round-the-clock hours with most regular gaming options available as permitted.
Vaccination proof to be required starting Sept. 22
Both Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment-owned businesses continue to adjust amid the Delta-driven fourth wave of the COVID-19 virus.
Beginning Sept. 22, Ontarians must be fully vaccinated (two doses plus a 14-day grace period) and provide proof of vaccination status to access certain businesses and settings.
Casinos are one of those settings.
“Based on the latest evidence and best advice, COVID-19 vaccine certificates give us the best chance to slow the spread of this virus while helping us to avoid further lockdowns,” said Ontario Premier Doug Ford, in a statement.
“If you haven’t received your first or second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, please do so today.”
In late August, the British Columbia government launched a similar initiative.
COVID-19 fourth wave impacting Ontario, casinos
On Sept. 2, Ontario reported 865 new COVID-19 cases, including 14 deaths. That’s the highest case count since early June. Unvaccinated people remain at the greatest risk.
The Ministry of Health reported 62 percent (540 people) of those cases came from the unvaccinated.
Because of those surging numbers, settings such as casinos will remain capped at 50% capacity for the time being.
Moving forward, Ontario casinos must be collectively holding their breath until they see what, if any, impact vaccine passports have on business.